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SBB - Welcome CD (album) cover



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3 stars SBB was one of the big-time prog acts to come out of communist-era Poland. They backed up one of Poland's biggest pop figures, Czeslaw Niemen (who, by that point, was pursuing a jazz-influenced type of prog rock) in 1972. This album, released at the end of 1978, Welcome finds the band pursuing a more typical brand of prog rock, and they had the benefit of recording in West Germany, so you obviously got a better production than what you usually get east of the Iron Curtain (many Eastern European albums from the communist-era had rather lousy production). But unfortunately, several of the songs go nowhere and I find a bit boring. "Rainbow Man" is actually a pretty decent and catchy song. I hadn't heard any of their other albums, so I can't judge their entire catalog just by this woefully uneven album.
Report this review (#17822)
Posted Friday, May 7, 2004 | Review Permalink
4 stars Not as good as Pamięć or Ze Słowem Biegne Do Ciebie, but it is still very good prog album. The production is much better than on their earlier album. Thought they have relased better albums, this one is still worth listen. Walking Around The Stormy Bay, Lonelines and Last Man on the Station are highlights of this album. Excellent addition to any prog music collection.
Report this review (#36563)
Posted Wednesday, June 15, 2005 | Review Permalink
4 stars I always had a problem with "Welcome". It includes my favorite and the best SBB track "Walkin' Around The Stormy Bay", which should be No 1 on each Fusion ranking. It also includes "Loneliness" beautiful piece of music reminding "Wish You Were Here" climate. And ... that's it. The rest is just boring. So, if you treat this CD as a single then this is perfect choice but if you love listening to the end then "Memento Z Banalnym Tryptykiem" is definitely much better record.

Search, Break and Build

PS. I used to listen "Walkin' Around The Stormy Bay" before each of my exams. It is very energetic music and gives me some kind of power.

Report this review (#126453)
Posted Thursday, June 21, 2007 | Review Permalink
3 stars Poland's biggest prog band SBB had released few albums in Polish, and which mostly include long compositions, when around 1978 they took advantage of some contacts in Germany. Welcome is perhaps their best produced and most accessible album at least up to that point. As I hardly know a word in Polish, I warmly welcome the English language. Also, this album was my first introduction to SBB (or to prog from Eastern Europe in general, if I remember correctly) in 1991 or so. It was interesting to revisit it now that I have heard their other albums too.

For all those reasons mentioned, it's quite natural that I enjoy this more than the other ones. However, a quick look at the SBB ratings revealed that this is not among the best rated ones. I can understand that for a connoisseur some more epic albums give bigger kicks (and maybe I too should listen to them more often...), while this one may have some weaknesses in songwriting, depending on one's taste. For me there's only one song I don't like ('Rainbow Man'). Some songs are quite introspective and sort of wandering, but not in a bad way, I think. Some others may find them boring, going-nowhere -type of thing. Here and there this album gest quite poppish and a bit sentimental, such as in 'Loneliness' and 'Welcome Warm Days And Nights', but still a certain distinctive Eastern-European flavour remains. As always, Jozef Skrzek's keyboards - Moog especially - take the leading role.

Perhaps for a proghead this album is at its strongest in the instrumental opener, 'Walking Around The Stormy Bay' which includes some excellent drumming by all three members. This is definitely not their most progressive work, but as an English language album this serves as a nice starting point from where one can continue to their more demanding works.

CD comes with plenty of bonus material (nearly doubling the running time), two of them being album tracks with differing length, and the rest are mostly instrumentals and jazzier than SBB in general (recorded in sessions preceeding the album-making). They are not any valid reason to get the CD if you otherwise have Welcome in some form. I enjoyed only one of the latter ones. Most of them feel like half-baked jams.

Report this review (#455067)
Posted Tuesday, May 31, 2011 | Review Permalink

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